pcguy2

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Hi,

I'm starting medical school this August and am doing immunology research right now. It looks like i'll be able to get a paper done within the next 6 months or so which leaves me an oppertunity to change labs sometime at the beginning of next year.

I hear that research can help strengthen ones chances of matching in a good program. However, I'm not committed to any one field in perticular. So I'm having a hard time deciding what I would like to research.

Lets say preliminarily I'm leaning towards IM. What field of research does that really match up with? Or am I thinking of it all wrong?

Thanks for you thoughts,
 

OncoCaP

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Hi,

I'm starting medical school this August and am doing immunology research right now. It looks like i'll be able to get a paper done within the next 6 months or so which leaves me an oppertunity to change labs sometime at the beginning of next year.

I hear that research can help strengthen ones chances of matching in a good program. However, I'm not committed to any one field in perticular. So I'm having a hard time deciding what I would like to research.

Lets say preliminarily I'm leaning towards IM. What field of research does that really match up with? Or am I thinking of it all wrong?

Thanks for you thoughts,

I'm an entering student like you. IM covers a lot of different areas of research. Immunology certainly appears to be relevant.

You may want to wait about six months after you have had some exposure to medical school ... you'll have more people you can talk to about this then and have had some exposure to different aspects of IM that might interest you.
 

ANCAdoc

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IM is a very diverse field! It includes the following disciplines:

Cario, Endocrin, Gastro, Hematology, Inf Disease, Nephro, Neuro, Pulmonology, and Rheumotology. (i may have missed some?)

If you are interested in IM, then practically anything medically relevant as far as research would probably do you some good.

If you like the work you are doing now in Immuno, then stick with it. Changing labs means a big learning curve again and some break in time. If you keep with the same lab you can simply start the ground running with another set of publishable experiments. But, don't stay if you don't like the work or would like to try something else out (the obvious!).

Read the thread "Cold emails to professors for research positions--how to do it?" . It has some good info about looking for new research positions.
 
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pcguy2

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IM is a very diverse field! It includes the following disciplines:

Cario, Endocrin, Gastro, Hematology, Inf Disease, Nephro, Neuro, Pulmonology, and Rheumotology. (i may have missed some?)

If you are interested in IM, then practically anything medically relevant as far as research would probably do you some good.

If you like the work you are doing now in Immuno, then stick with it. Changing labs means a big learning curve again and some break in time. If you keep with the same lab you can simply start the ground running with another set of publishable experiments. But, don't stay if you don't like the work or would like to try something else out (the obvious!).

Read the thread "Cold emails to professors for research positions--how to do it?" . It has some good info about looking for new research positions.

thanks for the tip. I know it covers so many fields, that why I feel overwhelmed. The research I'm doing now is interesting, but the lab is not on the same campus as the medical school, so i feel transportation might be a waste of time. I guess I'll get a better feel for what I'd like to do when school starts.
 

Twitch

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When school starts it may get tough to squeeze in an involved research undertaking as time becomes a precious commodity for most.

Most folks suggest getting a feel for how much available time you'll actually have and then see if you want to spend the remaining hours in a lab.
 

pcguy2

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This might have been asked before, but if I want to go into Cardiology (for example). How much does medical school research in cardiology help? Since cardiology is after residency, would only research during IM residency be counted?
 

ANCAdoc

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From what I have gathered from people at all levels in the pipeline:

The best publications are those in the same field you are trying to enter.
But, ANY medical publications are excellent to have no matter what field you want to enter.

Publications follow you around, so those you get in medical school are still valuable when it comes time to pursue a fellowship after (for ex) an internal medicine residency.
 

pcguy2

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Thanks. One last question if you don't mind. I would assume that its better to have focus'ed research (all in one field) or does it show something that someone has publications in 2 different or 3 different fields?

What are you thoughts?

Thanks
 

Pinkertinkle

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Thanks. One last question if you don't mind. I would assume that its better to have focus'ed research (all in one field) or does it show something that someone has publications in 2 different or 3 different fields?

What are you thoughts?

Thanks

Better 2 and 3 in your field of interest than 2 or 3 random ones (I estimate 30%-50% better p<.05). But better 2 or 3 random ones than none at all of course (100% better p<.001).
 

dannylee718

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Here are my 2c on the matter.

If I were you, I would def. "warm up" to medical school and aclimate myself to it before I decide to take on a research job. As far as I know, papers will act as a supplement when it comes to residency positions. So, I would first worry about my USMLE and LOIs before anything else.

Perhaps another alternative is to look into combined degrees i.e. PhD or MS so you can set aside time to totally devote to research. If you are really lucky, and work hard enough, you should be able to pump out 2-4 papers in a year.

I know a person who has never done research in his life, but ended up matching at Johns Hopkins for Opthomology (it also probably helps that he is a super genius). So, I would def. divert much of my efforts towards being "perfect" in terms of scores and performance in school.

Gotta make sure you eat your main course before you gorge yourself on the side-dishes right?

But in the end, its all up to you. You know yourself best. Good luck!

:hardy:
 

megadon

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I'm doing research now, never thought I would. Email came up, position open, first to respond. I'm the slacker military guy, but this is pretty much what I have found out. Research is obviously good. It gives me points in the military system for residency, but for all you, it helps with match and fellowships. I think the basic reason is that you do the same crap in pretty much every lab, SDS gel-electrophoresis, cell harvesting, etc. The fact that they don't have to train you is a huge plus. Plus most fellowships entail a bit of research, so experience in the field helps. It's all about not having to have someone working on something taking time off to train you. All this stuff, PCR, SDS, etc is not very difficult, but it is very very easy to screw up. It's all about technique. For example, if you don't know what you are doing with a micro pippette (ingest too much air), you lost three days cause your loading of samples was skewed. However, either you don't realize it for three days (run the gel, transfer the gel, 1 day, treat with primary antibodies, 1 day, treat with secondary antibodies and run film, 1 day), or you incorrectly interpret the data. If you realize it, 3 days lost. If you don't, potentially months working on a paper with crap data. Better to learn in med school where they pay you 8 bucks an hour vs as a resident or fellow where they have to pay you more.
 

MadameLULU

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IM is a very diverse field! It includes the following disciplines:

Cario, Endocrin, Gastro, Hematology, Inf Disease, Nephro, Neuro, Pulmonology, and Rheumotology. (i may have missed some?)
Critical Care is another one, and is often lumped with Pulm. Also, I'm not certain how much neuro is considered part of IM, but I could be wrong.
I agree with a lot of the comments on this page. It's probably a good idea to wait a bit before committing yourself to research once you've started med school. I'd wait until 1 or 2 tests, so you can monitor your progress and make adjustments accordingly.
 
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